New Delhi: Observing that the aim of pension is to provide social security to government servants, the Central Administrative Tribunal has directed the Delhi government to grant pension to one of its former employees who was denied the benefit on the ground that he had resigned before completing 20 years in service.
"The object of pension rules itself is to provide social security to government servants, by way of pension, but not to deny the same even to a dismissed, removed or compulsorily retired government servant," CAT member Ajay Kumar said.
The tribunal made the observations while deciding in favour of petitioner Amar Singh, a retired army personnel who had challenged the Delhi government`s order rejecting his requests for pension.
After serving in the Army Medical Corps as Naik, Singh retired on March 24, 1986. On March 22, 1988 he joined as a laboratory technician in Aruna Asif Ali hospital against a vacancy reserved for ex-serviceman. After serving there for 18 years 4 months and 9 days, he resigned on July 1, 2006, stating he intends to dedicate himself fully in the spiritual service of the society.
He had submitted that his repeated requests for pension and gratuity were denied by the hospital which said he had not completed the required service of 20 years to qualify for the benefits.
Later, the authorities concerned told him that his case was referred to the Finance (Accounts) Department of Delhi government which had clarified that he is not entitled to any post-retirement benefit as he had resigned from his post unconditionally and not to take up employment in another government entity.
The government also relied upon a pension rule to say that its object was to provide benefit of past service to those who take up another employment under the government after resigning to the earlier service or post even before completing the qualifying service.
The tribunal, however, rejected the contention of the Delhi government and said, "A comprehensive reading of the entire pension scheme clearly establishes that it is a beneficial legislation" and it cannot be interpreted to deprive pension to those who were allowed to resign from one government service unconditionally (not for joining other government service).
It directed Secretary, Health Ministry of Delhi government and the medical superintendent of Aruna Asaf Ali hospital to give all monetary benefits with arrears to Amar Singh within 60 days.